The California State Legislature provided commercial lenders with welcome news this week when the California Senate passed Senate Bill 577 (“SB 577”). If it is signed by the governor, SB 577 will reinstate the de minimis exemption from the California Financing Law (“CFL”) for lenders making a single commercial loan of $5,000 or more in
Jonathan D. Jaffe
California Becomes the Latest State to License Debt Collectors
On September 25, California Governor Newsom signed Senate Bill 908, enacting the Debt Collection Licensing Act (the “DCLA”), placing California with the majority of states that require consumer debt collectors to be licensed. Subject to a few exemptions, persons engaging in the business of debt collection in California (including debt buyers) will be required to submit a license application before January 1, 2022. Senate Bill 908 is just one of a number of consumer protection bills enacted in California in recent days, including a bill creating the state’s “mini-CFPB.”
Continue Reading California Becomes the Latest State to License Debt Collectors
Borrower, Don’t Lend Me A Hand – Remote Notarization During the COVID-19 Pandemic
How do documents get signed and notarized when the parties signing the documents are faced with stay-at-home orders? While both the federal Electronic Signatures In Global And National Commerce Act and state-enacted versions of the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act authorize notaries to perform electronic notarizations, electronic notarization is different than remote online notarization (RON). Without…
California Legislature Declares that Mortgage Debt Is Regulated under the State’s Debt Collection Law
For many years it was unclear whether mortgage debt was covered under the California Rosenthal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (the “Rosenthal Act”), which is California’s corollary to the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”). That issue was resolved on October 7, 2019, when California Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law legislation that expressly includes “mortgage debt” within the Rosenthal Act’s definition of “consumer credit.” Senate Bill 187 (“SB 187”), which is effective January 1, 2020, amends the Rosenthal Act to expressly apply to debt collection activities involving residential mortgage loans.
SB 187 also amends the Rosenthal Act so that it now includes attorneys in the definition of “debt collector.” Until the amended Rosenthal Act goes into effect, attorneys are excluded from that definition.
Continue Reading California Legislature Declares that Mortgage Debt Is Regulated under the State’s Debt Collection Law
Happy New Year! California Legislation Addresses Financial Services Industry in 2019 and Beyond
The California legislature was active in 2018, enacting several new requirements and provisions applicable to the financial services industry. Those requirements include an important and comprehensive privacy regime (the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018, or CCPA), which establishes new protections for personal information that covered commercial enterprises collect. The CCPA becomes effective January 1,…
California Enacts TILA-Like Requirements for Business-Purpose Loans
New California legislation will impose disclosure requirements, similar to those under the federal Truth in Lending Act, on commercial-purpose loans of $500,000 or less, including arrangements such as factoring, merchant cash advances, and certain assignments of accounts and receivables. The disclosures will generally include the total cost of the financing, expressed both as a…
CFPB’s New Regulatory Inquiry Process: Ask and Ye Shall Receive?
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau recently announced a change in the way financial institutions, service providers, and others can obtain informal guidance on regulatory issues from the CFPB’s staff. It appears that the only change is the access vehicle to use when posing questions.
In the past, the CFPB preferred that questions be posed via…
Carpe Per Diem Redux — California Clarifies How to Document Compliance
After leaving residential mortgage lenders guessing for many years, the California Department of Business Oversight (“DBO”) finally provided the industry with some guidance on the documentation licensees may use to verify compliance with the state’s per diem statutes.
The California per diem statutes (Financial Code § 50204(o) and Civil Code § 2948.5) prohibit a lender from requiring a borrower to pay interest for more than one day prior to the disbursement of loan proceeds, subject to some limited exceptions.
In 2007, the DBO issued Release No. 58-FS (the “2007 Release”), which provided guidance on acceptable evidence of compliance with Financial Code § 50204(o):
- A final, certified HUD-1 that reflects the disbursement date;
- Written or electronic records of communications between the licensee and the settlement agent verifying the disbursement date of loan proceeds and identifying the name of the settlement agent providing the information and the electronic or business address used to contact the settlement agent; or
- Contemporaneous written or electronic records of oral communications between the licensee and the settlement agent verifying the disbursement date of loan proceeds and identifying the name and telephone number of the settlement agent providing the information.
Of course, much has changed since 2007, including the enactment and implementation of TRID, which replaced the HUD-1 with the Closing Disclosure. …
Continue Reading Carpe Per Diem Redux — California Clarifies How to Document Compliance
Carpe Per Diem Disclosure — California Department of Business Oversight Clarifies its Position
The California Department of Business Oversight* (“DBO”) appears to have backed off of its pronouncement late last year that lenders may not deliver per diem disclosures to all borrowers.
California’s infamous per diem statutes (Fin. Code § 50204(o); Civ. Code § 2948.5) have been the basis of scores of licensing agency examination findings and actions for many years now, resulting in significant refunds and penalties. In fact, just last week the DBO announced that a lender had agreed to pay a settlement of $1.4 million for per diem violations. That is just one of many such settlements that often run into the many hundreds of thousands of dollars or more. One reason for this is the lack of certainty in agency interpretation. Just one example of that uncertainty was addressed by the DBO at the California Mortgage Bankers Association’s (“CMBA’s”) Legal Issues and Regulatory Compliance Conference this past December. …
Continue Reading Carpe Per Diem Disclosure — California Department of Business Oversight Clarifies its Position
CFPB to Publish Servicing Rule; Requirements Effective October 19, 2017
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has offered its new mortgage servicing rule for public inspection today, meaning it is scheduled to be published in the Federal Register on October 19, 2016. The CFPB informally released the rule on its website in August.
The effective date of the rule is tied to its publication date,…